J2 Week 2 Round-up

Only 2 teams remained with a 100% record after this Sunday’s action in J2. One of them, Vissel Kobe, have been talked about on other parts of this site thanks to their 4-0 win over FC Gifu. Somewhat surprisingly, the other team with a 100% record is Avispa Fukuoka. Avispa came from behind to beat Montedio Yamagata 2-1 at the Level 5 stadium thanks to goals from Ishizu and a pearler from Jun Kanakubo who curled one onto the top corner from 20+ yards out. Montedio continue their awful run of form and, with their first home game of the season up next against new boys V-Varen Nagasaki, they desperately need a win.

V.Varen welcomed Gamba Osaka to town for their first ever J.League home game. Over 18,000 turned up, but what they got to witness was a first half masterclass from the Kansai side. Gamba steamed into a 3-0 lead thanks to two goals from recalled striker Shoki Hirai and a long range strike from Futagawa. Nagasaki pulled one back through Mizunaga after some typically average Gamba defending, but Hasegawa’s men held on to record their first ever J2 win. Further south in Kyushu, Roasso Kumamoto were beaten 3-0 by JEF United, who registered their first three points of the season. It could have been more than three but JEF hit the frame of the goal on three occasions, so they had to settle for two goals from Kempes (the first via a huge deflection) and one  from Yonekura. This win will ease some pressure on Jun Suzuki, the JEF coach.

The final Kyushu side, Giravanz Kitakyushu, claimed a creditable point away at Fagiano Okayama.   In fact, Giravanz came closest to taking all three points, but a second half Naito effort was superbly saved by Fagiano ‘keeper Nakabayashi. For a team expected to kick on and make a play-off push, Okayama have been decidedly unimpressive in their opening two games. Ehime FC and Matsumoto Yamaga played out a 1-1 draw in Matsuyama. Yamaga opened the scoring on the half hour mark through Masaaki Iida before Ishii leveled 15 minutes from time when his cross from the right sailed over Yamaga ‘keeper Yuto Shirai and into the net. Both teams have 4 points from their opening two games.

Kyoto Sanga and Tokyo Verdy drew 0-0 at Nishikyogoku, although Kyoto could have played an extra 90 mins and still not have scored such was their profligacy. Verdy will have coach Miura back in the dugout for their next game against Okayama. Tokushima Vortis twice came from behind to salvage a decent point away at Yokohama FC – goals from Shibasaki & Masahiro Nasukawa canceling out efforts from Nogami & Terada. Thespa Kusatsu Gunma and Gainare Tottori played out 0-0 draw in impossibly windy conditions, while Mito Hollyhock beat Kataller Toyama 1-0 at K’s Denki Stadium via a goal from veteran striker Takayuki Suzuki. Kataller could have equalized late on, but ex-FC Gifu frontman Yudai Nishikawa spurned an excellent chance.  Finally, Tochigi sprang a surprise as they performed a smash-and-grab raid at Sapporo Dome as they pinched a 1-0 win against Consadole Sapporo. Consa missed numerous chances before Koji Hirose beautifully controlled a lofted through ball and held his nerve to slot home.

Week 2 results

  • Mito Hollyhock 1-0 Kataller Toyama
  • Fagiano Okayama 0-0 Giravanz Kitakyushu
  • V-Varen Nagasaki 1-3 Gamba Osaka
  • Vissel Kobe 4-0 FC Gifu
  • Avispa Fukuoka 2-1 Montedio Yamagata
  • Ehime FC 1-1 Matsumoto Yamaga
  • Yokohama FC 2-2 Tokushima Vortis
  • Roasso Kumamoto 0-3 JEF United
  • Consadole Sapporo 0-1 Tochigi SC
  • Kyoto Sanga 0-0 Tokyo Verdy
  • Thespa Kusatsu Gunma 0-0 Gainare Tottori

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